Latest Quasar Stories

Advanced Hubble Equipment Reveals Galaxies' Most Elusive Secrets
2011-11-17 14:30:01

New instrument shows the gaseous halos of galaxies are much larger and more massive than the distribution of stars within the galaxy New, high-precision equipment orbiting Earth aboard the Hubble Space Telescope is now sending such rich data back to astronomers, some feel they are crossing the final frontier toward understanding galaxy evolution, says Todd Tripp, leader of the team at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Galaxies are the birthplaces of stars, each with a dense,...

Astronomers Find Clouds Of Primordial Gas From The Early Universe
2011-11-11 04:10:18

For the first time, astronomers have found pristine clouds of the primordial gas that formed in the first few minutes after the Big Bang. The composition of the gas matches theoretical predictions, providing direct evidence in support of the modern cosmological explanation for the origins of elements in the universe. Only the lightest elements, mostly hydrogen and helium, were created in the Big Bang. Then a few hundred million years passed before clumps of this primordial gas condensed to...

Black Hole Imaged Gobbling Up Accretion Disc
2011-11-04 09:59:30

[ Watch the Video ] A team of scientists has used the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope to observe a quasar accretion disc – a brightly glowing disc of matter that is slowly being sucked into its galaxy´s central black hole. Their study makes use of a novel technique that uses gravitational lensing to give an immense boost to the power of the telescope. The incredible precision of the method has allowed astronomers to directly measure the disc´s size and plot the temperature...

2011-10-11 09:28:03

Astrophysicists have found evidence of black holes destroying stars, a long-sought phenomenon that provides a new window into general relativity. The research, reported in the latest issue of the Astrophysical Journal, also opens up a method to search for the possible existence of a large population of presently undetectable "intermediate mass" black holes which are hypothesized to be precursors to the super-massive black holes at the centers of most large galaxies. The study was carried...

Laser Art Installation Featuring Hubble Observations Travels To The US
2011-09-23 08:08:04

  A public art installation featuring Hubble observations of distant galaxies, quasars and stars is going to the USA. From the Distant Past features a laser projecting spectra from distant celestial objects onto the facades of buildings. While the green lines might appear abstract at first, they represent light, split into its constituent colors, that has travelled across space for billions of years from some of the most distant galaxies ever observed. The idea for the installation...

2011-08-26 10:18:44

The Milky Way will have the fuel to continue forming stars, thanks to massive clouds of ionized gas raining down from its halo and intergalactic space. This is the conclusion of a new study by Nicolas Lehner and Christopher Howk, faculty in the Department of Physics at the University of Notre Dame. Their report, "A Reservoir of Ionized Gas in the Galactic Halo to Sustain Star Formation in the Milky Way," is published in Science August 26. Using the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph, one of the...

2011-07-22 14:40:00

A team of astronomers have discovered the largest and farthest reservoir of water ever detected in the universe. The researchers found a mass of water vapor that is at least 140 trillion times that of all water in the world's oceans combined, and 100,000 times more massive than the sun. The team said the light has taken 12 billion years to reach Earth, and the astronomers were observing the light when the universe was just 1.6 billion years old. "The environment around this quasar is unique...

2011-07-21 08:11:24

Whether on their own or orbiting as a pair, black holes don't typically sit still. Not only do they spin, they can also move laterally across their host galaxy. And according to astrophysicists at Brigham Young University, both types of movement power massive jets of energy known as quasars. The study, which appears in the current issue of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), is the first to compute what may fuel some of the brightest persistent lights in the universe....

2011-07-08 02:00:26

The discovery potential of the future international SKA radio telescope has been glimpsed following the commissioning of a working optical fibre link between CSIRO's Australian SKA Pathfinder (ASKAP) telescope in Western Australia, and other radio telescopes across Australia and New Zealand. The achievement will be announced at the 2011 International SKA Forum, taking place this week in Banff, Canada. On 29 June, six telescopes "“ ASKAP, three CSIRO telescopes in New South Wales, a...

Latest Quasar Reference Libraries

2004-10-19 04:45:44

Large-Scale Structure of the Cosmos -- Stars are organised into galaxies which in turn appear to form clusters and superclusters, separated by voids. Prior to 1989 it was commonly assumed that the superclusters were the largest structures in existence, and that they were distributed more-or-less uniformly throughout the universe in every direction. However, in 1989, Margaret Geller and John Huchra discovered the "Great Wall", a sheet of galaxies more than 500 million light years long...

2004-10-19 04:45:42

Supermassive Black Hole -- A Supermassive black hole is a black hole with a mass in the range of millions or billions solar masses. A supermassive black hole has some interesting properties differing from his low-mass cousins: -- The average density of a supermassive black hole can be very low, and actually can be lower than water's density. This happens because the black hole diameter increases linearly with mass, and consequently density drops much faster. -- Strong tidal...

2004-10-19 04:45:42

Redshift -- Redshift is the phenomenon that the frequency of light when observed, under certain circumstances, can be lower than the frequency of light when it was emitted at the source. This usually occurs when the source moves away from the observer, as in the Doppler effect. More specifically, the term redshift is used for the observation that the spectrum of light emitted by distant galaxies is shifted to lower frequencies (towards the red end of the spectrum, hence the name) when...

2004-10-19 04:45:41

Microquasar -- Microquasars are smaller cousins of quasars. They are named after quasars, as they have some common characteristics: strong and variable radio emission often seen as radio jets, and an accretion disk surrounding a black hole. In quasars, the black hole is supermassive (millions of solar masses) as in microquasars, the black hole mass is a few solar masses. In microquasars, the accreted mass comes from a normal star and the accretion disk is very luminous in optical regions...

2004-10-19 04:45:41

Gravitational Lens -- A gravitational lens is formed when the light from a very distant, bright object (such as a quasar) is "bent" around a massive object (such as a massive galaxy) between the bright object and the viewer. The process is known as gravitational lensing, and was one of the predictions made by Einstein's general relativity. Description In a gravitational lens, the gravity from the massive object bends light as a lens might. As a result, the path of the light from a...

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Word of the Day
  • Licking.
  • Hence Running along or over a surface, as if in the act of licking; flowing over or along; lapping or bathing; softly bright; gleaming.
This word comes the Latin 'lambere,' to lick.